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Researchers Identify Brain Circuit That Regulates Thirst

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Howard Hughes Medical Institute scientists have identified a circuit in the brains of mice that regulates thirst. When a subset of cells in the circuit is switched on, mice immediately begin drinking water, even if they are fully hydrated. A second set of cells suppresses the urge to drink.

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Brain’s On-Off Thirst Switch Identified

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Neurons that trigger our sense of thirst—and neurons that turn it off—have been identified by Columbia University Medical Center neuroscientists. The paper was published today in the online edition of Nature.

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Learning From Scorpions to Control Impulses

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Scorpions can teach us a lot about the benefits of prolonging nerve impulses, and we might now be better students. The results of a new study could pave the way for easier identification of drugs that function similarly to scorpion venom, but with happier results for the recipient.

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Researchers Discover Genetic Links to Size of Brain Structures

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Five genetic variants that influence the size of structures within the human brain have been discovered by an international team that included a Georgia State University researcher.

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New Brain Pathway Offers Hope for Treating Hypogylcemia

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A novel pathway buried deep within a region of the brain produces a brain hormone that acts as a crucial sensor of blood glucose levels. Understanding how the hormone orchestrates the body's response to low blood sugar offers hope for treating hypoglycemia.

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EMBARGOED

A reporter's PressPass is required to access this story until the embargo expires on 27-Jan-2015 7:05 PM EST

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Research Suggests Anti-Inflammatory Protein May Trigger Plaque in Alzheimer’s Disease

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Inflammation has long been studied in Alzheimer’s, but in a counterintuitive finding reported in a new paper, University of Florida researchers have uncovered the mechanism by which anti-inflammatory processes may trigger the disease.

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Blame It on Your Brain: Salt and Hypertension

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An international research team led by scientists at McGill University has found that excessive salt intake “reprograms” the brain, interfering with a natural safety mechanism that normally prevents the body’s arterial blood pressure from rising.

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Rare Neurological Disease Shines Light on Health of Essential Nerve Cells

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Pelizaeus Merzbacher disease, or PMD, is a devastating neurological condition that, in its most severe form, kills infants weeks after birth. Thirty years ago, UW-Madison neuroscientist Ian Duncan noticed a genetic mutation in dogs that was practically identical to the disease in humans. Now, in the online edition of the journal Neurobiology of Disease, Duncan has laid out the results of his marathon pursuit of PMD.

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EMBARGOED

A reporter's PressPass is required to access this story until the embargo expires on 27-Jan-2015 12:00 AM EST